I’ve seen this picture going around, with people reblogging it and adding comments like “omg I’m cognitive” and “I’m all three!” and things like that. And it makes me want to punch my screen.
Look, self-diagnosis is a thing that seems to be going around this site. A lot. And whatever. But when it comes to social anxiety, people seem to go over board. You do NOT need to have ALL of these symptoms to have a legitimate case of social anxiety, but at the same time, having ONE or even MORE of these symptoms does NOT AUTOMATICALLY MEAN that you HAVE legitimate social anxiety.
Low self-esteem, thoughts of inadequacy, fear, upset stomach, dry mouth, problems dating, decline to speak up at meetings, avoiding eye contact— these are all NATURAL THINGS many people do or happen to people when they’re stressed or scared, or just because they might be a little awkward. They’re far too broad of symptoms to lump together, because that implies that anyone who’s ever had a stressful week or who’s ever felt bad about themselves has social anxiety. And since many people on this site (who identify as teenagers) complain about how stressed and bad about themselves things like school makes them feel, it’s more than easy for them to assume their natural growing-up pains can be blamed on a legit medical disorder.
Assuming you have a mental disorder because you see pictures like this is harmful to yourself and insulting to people who have been legitimately diagnosed and need legitimate help.